TEXAS CITY, Texas -- Federal assistance to help Texans and Texas communities recover from the Hurricane Ike disaster has topped $2.5 billion, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the Texas Governor's Division of Emergency Management (GDEM) announced Thursday.
The disaster assistance -- in the form of FEMA grants as well as low-interest disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) -- now totals $2.51 billion. The total continues to increase daily as communities, homeowners, renters and business owners move forward with their recovery efforts, said FEMA and GDEM officials.
"This $2.5 billion has helped thousands of individuals and families get into safe and secure housing and back on their feet," said Federal Coordinating Officer Brad Harris. "The assistance also has offset the enormous cost of recovery for the state of Texas and local communities."
The total includes the following:
- More than $530.5 million has been disbursed for disaster assistance under the Individuals and Households Program. This includes $412 million in Housing Assistance and $118.5 million in Other Needs Assistance.
- Total Public Assistance (PA) grants to the state, local governments and nonprofit organizations total more than $1.3 billion. Included in the PA total is:
- $588.7 million for debris removal,
- $509.8 million for emergency protective measures,
- $237.9 million for repairs to roads and bridges, water control facilities, public buildings, public utilities, and recreational and other areas, and
- $8.5 million in grants for state management costs.
- The SBA has approved $635.8 million in low-interest disaster loans for homeowners, renters, businesses of all sizes and private nonprofit organizations.
Meanwhile, the state of Texas and local entities are nearing completion on debris cleanup on public streets and other rights of way, and in the Galveston Bay system and area lakes. FEMA is reimbursing the state for 100 percent of the costs for debris removal and disposal.
Additionally 1,234 individuals and families previously occupying temporary manufactured housing units have returned to their repaired homes or found other long-term housing options. That is more than one-third of the 3,692 households provided these units in areas that lacked other housing options.
"Texans affected by Ike are repairing and rebuilding," said State Coordinating Officer Ben Patterson. "The recovery effort has made great progress over these past 11 months."
The presidential disaster declaration for Hurricane Ike includes Public Assistance grants for 50 counties and one tribal nation, and Individual Assistance for 34 counties and the tribal nation. In all, the area affected by Hurricane Ike covers more than 42,000 square miles, almost the size of the state of Tennessee.
For the most recent summary of Individual Assistance, Public Assistance and SBA loans to Texas by county, visit the www.fema.gov/ike Web site and click the Disaster Statistics button. Additional information is available online at www.txdps.state.tx.us/dem.
FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.